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  1. #1

    most terrifying disease I've ever heard of

    So, studying for finals I just came across this disease I've never heard of before - which makes sense since according to wiki there's been less than 10 documented cases - and I thought I should share the horror with you guys.

    It's called Fatal Familial Insomnia, and it's a prion disease. What's a prion? It's basically an infective protein, the same kind of infective agent that causes bovine spongiform encephalopathy (mad cow disease); this certain prion gradually takes away your ability to sleep. That doesn't sounds so bad, one could argue, but let's change your mind about that.

    It takes up to 36 months to die from this disease, with gradually increasing insomnia (inability to sleep). From what I can gather the complete inability to sleep happens about half-way into the process. Oh, and did I mention it's untreatable? And that sleeping pills make it worse?

    What happens is, through your inability to sleep, you become more and more unstable as your mind isn't getting the rest it needs; this includes panic attacks, paranoia, phobic behaviour, hallucinations and rapid loss of weight - the harshness/frequency of all theseincrease the longer you go without sleep.

    During the last 6 months or so, your brain has gotten so messed up that you're now in a dement, unresponsible, vegetable state after which you die (I presume) from suffocation or whatever happens first when your brain is so broken it can't even get your most basic bodily functions running (metabolism, breathing, involuntary muscle movement etc).

    Now, being unable to sleep while your mind is slowly deteriorating for up to 36 months, sounds like a pretty hellish experience to me. I mean, I get cranky and grouchy after just 36+ hours of no sleep, imagine how you would feel after a week, a month, a year...? You're obviously also quite aware of the process in which you're - oh so slowly - going insane.

    In addition, the end of the wikipage states (about prions) "Until recently prion diseases were only thought to be transmissible via direct contact with infected tissue, such as from eating infected tissue, transfusion or transplantation; new research now suggests that prion diseases can be transmitted via aerosols". Now, mind you, this doesn't mean that it's airbourne but basically that it could be bourne by on aerosols (very dispersed liquids in a cloud, sort of like fog).

    TLDR;

    This disaease kills you after up to 3 years of no sleep, at which your brain shuts down.

    Lovely disease, right?!

    BRB NEED TO CALL MY MOM AND WEEP
    Last edited by Ignominious; 2012-03-08 at 07:42 PM.

  2. #2
    Saw that on 1000 ways to die at one point and agree it was pretty terrifying.
    "A blind, deaf, comatose, lobotomy patient could feel my ANGER"

  3. #3
    This sounds fascinating to me...

  4. #4
    Old God Frozenbeef's Avatar
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    what if someone puts the disease in food sounds like hell..i would definitly want my life ended

  5. #5
    Scarab Lord Fahrenheit's Avatar
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    I think I you get this, you get your affairs in order and commit suicide in a way of your choosing. I'm not about to wait around for 18 months or more to whither away to nothing with no hope of cure.
    Rudimentary creatures of blood and flesh. You touch my mind, fumbling in ignorance, incapable of understanding.
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  6. #6
    Scarab Lord Azutael's Avatar
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    I have actually heard of that disease before, not as much in detail. But the general idea of what it was.

    Would surely be a nightmare, I cant even go 24h anymore without sleep before I get all fed up and whatnot. So imagine enduring it for 36 months?

  7. #7
    I've always considered anything that involves a slow decent into madness to be worse then a relativity quick but intensely painful physical death.

  8. #8
    That disease is a badass.
    It's LeviOsa, not LeviosAR!

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Holy View Post
    I've always considered anything that involves a slow decent into madness to be worse then a relativity quick but intensely painful physical death.
    I think the 36 months is from one of the more special cases of this disease, from one guy who actually managed to combat it some - mostly through meditation and low-stimuli floating tanks. Basically, he did whatever he could to get his brain to shut down as much as possible that didn't involve sleeping. Not sure if the "average" death is that long.

  10. #10
    Mechagnome khatsoo's Avatar
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    Man, that's a lot of alters you could level to 85 or mats you could farm with that bunch of hours you have left.

  11. #11
    New Zombie Virus...just need to add a blood-thirst twist to it!

  12. #12
    Herald of the Titans Beavis's Avatar
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    Psh, ebola man. Ebola.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Ignominious View Post
    I think the 36 months is from one of the more special cases of this disease, from one guy who actually managed to combat it some - mostly through meditation and low-stimuli floating tanks. Basically, he did whatever he could to get his brain to shut down as much as possible that didn't involve sleeping. Not sure if the "average" death is that long.
    Perhaps it's more personal. I remember reading something about a guy who had locked-in syndrome for more then a decade. he also cited meditation as how he remained sane. I think I would personally turn into some kind of raving lunatic after a year.

  14. #14
    Stood in the Fire Baenesur's Avatar
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    Quite sure I would grab a gun and shoot myself if I happend to get hands on that disease!
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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Beavis View Post
    Psh, ebola man. Ebola.
    I'd much rather die (relatively) fast, with my insides pouring out of my every orifice, than slowly over three years time by going insane. FFI (Fatal Familial Insomnia) has the upper hand simply because it takes so freaking long...

  16. #16
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amyotro...eral_sclerosis

    is the most scary as far as i know, slowly losing all muscle function. this means your brain is fully functional within ur body that u cant move, after a long time u cant walk, use your arms or even speak. then at the very end you die because ur heart muscle for instance becomes to weak

  17. #17
    I read into it a bit more. I was curious about being put under like before surgery or induced coma and they have tried this - the brain still doesn't shut down!

    What I also found very interesting was the one patient who lived a year longer than anyone else by employing meditation and various vitamin regiments. I was curious if meditating would be helpful. I don't know much about it but one bit of info that stuck with me that I once read was that meditating can be more rejuvenating than sleeping. So I wonder if someone who was a master of this practice woul fair better, or even be able to defeat this disease...

  18. #18
    When I noticed this thread I was going to mention that disease that literally eats your flesh and cause you to basically rot away...while still alive.

    But I think this no sleep disease is actually much worse...

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by pzijderv View Post
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amyotro...eral_sclerosis

    is the most scary as far as i know, slowly losing all muscle function. this means your brain is fully functional within ur body that u cant move, after a long time u cant walk, use your arms or even speak. then at the very end you die because ur heart muscle for instance becomes to weak
    They're basically very similar but also opposites, one shuts down your brain over a long period of time; the other your body. Imagine having them both at once?!?!

  20. #20
    Scarab Lord
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fahrenheit View Post
    I think I you get this, you get your affairs in order and commit suicide in a way of your choosing. I'm not about to wait around for 18 months or more to whither away to nothing with no hope of cure.
    Yeah I would rack up some major credit card debt traveling and taking care of the bucket list while I could still manage to sleep.

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